WINTER STORM FERRIS IS HERE THIS MORNING!
A Winter Storm Warning is in effect for all of Connecticut through tonight....
A steady snow has developed and is continuing to pick up in intensity. Heavier snow bands have been moving into Eastern CT and Western CT, and those two parts of CT are where we're expecting the highest totals. This is a change from our earlier thinking. But with the radar trends right now, and those two bands not moving very much, we're expecting 8-14" in both Western and Eastern CT. Meanwhile, if you live in Central CT-you'll likely get less. We've lowered totals to 4-8" there. So far our weather watchers are reporting 8" in Bethel, 6" in Danbury and Salem, 5" in Norfolk and Torrington. Meanwhile in Rocky Hill- 2".
Winter Storm Ferris is undergoing what meteorologists refer to as “bombogenesis”- major intensification and pressure drop. The storm center will pass offshore to the east of Cape Cod by late in the day. Snow will be heavy at times in Connecticut, perhaps falling at the rate of 1-3”/hour at some point. There is even a chance for thunder snow. The snow will fall sideways due to the strong north to northeasterly wind that could gust to 40 mph or higher, especially over Eastern Connecticut. Snow should begin to let up by late afternoon, but it may not completely come to an end until later in the evening. Power outages are quite possible today too, although not to the degree we saw during Winter Storm Elsa last week. Some limbs and branches are already compromised and it won’t take much to bring them down. While the snow will be wet, it won’t be as wet as the snow Winter Storm Elsa produced.
WEDNESDAY, THURSDAY, FRIDAY…
In the aftermath of Winter Storm Ferris, we can expect a few snow showers on Wednesday. Snow showers could produce minor accumulations in some areas. Sky conditions will vary from partly sunny to overcast and there will be a stiff west-northwesterly wind that could gust to over 30 mph. It’ll be a chilly day with highs in the upper 30s and lower 40s.
Thursday will feature a mix of clouds and sunshine, a gusty northwest wind, and highs in the low to middle 40s.
Colder air will overspread the state Thursday night and Friday. Temperatures will drop into the mid and upper 20s Thursday night and the mercury will struggle to reach 40 degrees Friday afternoon. A strong northwest wind will gust to 30-40 mph and wind chill temperatures will be in the teens and 20s. A few flurries and snow showers are also possible on Friday.
Saturday, St. Patrick’s Day, is looking better. A ridge of high pressure will provide plenty of sunshine, but it will be breezy and seasonably chilly with highs in the middle 40s at best.
Sunday will be the better of the 2 weekend days with mostly sunny skies, a brisk west-northwest breeze, and highs close to 50 degrees! A cold front is expected to move southward across Southern New England Sunday night.
EARLY NEXT WEEK…
High pressure to our north will push cooler air southward across New England. Highs Monday are expected to be in the 40s to possibly near 50 degrees and sky conditions should vary from partly to mostly cloudy. There is the chance for more snow or mixed precipitation Tuesday and Wednesday.
Chief Meteorologist Bruce DePrest, with Melissa Cole
THE AFTERMATH OF WINTER STORM ELSA…
The combination of heavy, wet snow and a gusty wind caused plenty of trouble in Connecticut when it comes to power outages. At one point, more than 160,000 customers were left in the dark Wednesday night and power may not be completely restored for several more days. Snowfall ranged from 3.6” in New London to 28” in Warren! For a list of snowfall totals in or near your town, check out the following link: http://www.wfsb.com/story/37682132/snowfall-totals-around-the-state
Winds gusted to over 40 mph in many parts of the state during the height of the storm and the temperature was near or above freezing when the heavy snow was falling. That’s why the snow clung to trees, branches, and power lines. The wet snow was very greasy and it made for treacherous driving conditions.
The average temperature for February came in at 35.5 degrees, which makes this February the 5th warmest in 113 years of record keeping for the Greater Hartford Area! The warmest February on record for the Greater Hartford Area was in 1998 when the average temperature was 36.2 degrees. February 1954 is in 2nd place with an average temperature of 36.1. February 2012 is in 3rd place with an average temperature of 35.7. February 1925 is in 4th place with an average temperature of 35.6. Currently, February 1981 is in 5th place with an average temperature of 35.3 degrees.
We had plenty of precipitation in February. The grand total was 5.13” at Bradley International. This includes rain and the water equivalent of snow and ice. Normal precipitation for February is 2.89”. That means we had a surplus of 2.24”. Total snowfall for the month was 8.3”, which is 2.7” below normal.
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